Thursday, January 19, 2012

And Then There Were Four...

Out of a field of candidates that for many were left wanting, my choice from the bunch has, with grace and dignity, bowed out before the South Carolina primary and endorsed Newt Gingrich.

Texas Gov. Rick Perry on Thursday dropped out of the race for the Republican presidential nomination and endorsed Newt Gingrich, adding a fresh layer of unpredictability to the campaign two days before the South Carolina primary.

"Newt's not perfect, but who among us is?" Perry said. He called the former House speaker a "conservative visionary" best suited to replace Barack Obama in the White House...

Gingrich issued a statement welcoming the endorsement. "I ask the supporters of Governor Perry to look at my record of balancing the budget, cutting spending, reforming welfare, and enacting pro-growth policies to create millions of new jobs and humbly ask for their vote," Gingrich said.

Romney reacted by praising Perry for running "a campaign based upon love of country and conservative principles" and saying he "has earned a place of prominence as a leader in our party."

Perry said he decided to suspend his campaign after concluding "there is no viable path forward for me."

Here's the full concession speech:

Erick at RedState has more info:

Governor Perry will head up a 10th Amendment project for Speaker Gingrich to rally Governors and state legislators toward a plan of devolving power from Washington. This project will include helping shape the Republican platform for the general election, something small government conservatives have been concerned about.

Governor Perry will also campaign for Speaker Gingrich in Texas. Texas has more than enough delegates at 155 (they are proportional) to offset Newt Gingrich not being on the Virginia ballot, which only has 49 delegates.

Aaron at RedState sums it up here:

The circumstances under which I write this are beyond horrible, I get it. It sucks that Gov. Perry is in this position. It sucks that the people of IA, NH, and now SC, have ignored the record of an outstanding governor and true blue conservative. It sucks that people have relied on shallow criteria for selecting a nominee.

It sucks, but the reality is, this is what has happened.

In other news, it's official... Iowa was won not my Romney, but by Santorum!

Sarah Palin does a quasi-endorsement of Newt in SC. Her husband Todd made an official endorsement himself last week.

Newt responds to Palin's comments.

Via Gateway Pundit, Legal Insurrection had this clear-eyed point about Romney:

We are on a path to nominate someone who campaigned against Reagan, campaigned against the Contract with America, campaigned against those who are pro-Life, campaigned against 2d Amendment rights, campaigned against conservatism, and designed and enacted the precursor to Obamacare from which he will not back away.

Not if I can stop it.

Meanwhile, the latest Rasmussen poll in SC has Newt up 33% to Romney's 31%. Santorum's in fourth at 11%.

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